November 2020
Nov. 10, 2:30-3:30 p.m.

An invitation to all faith community leaders:  Learn more about how to deal with the flu and COVID-19 to keep yourselves, your families and your faith communities safe and healthy this winter.

During this webinar, we will hear from Dr. Robert Citronberg, Executive Medical Director of Infectious Disease for Advocate Aurora Health, and Dr. Nkem Iroegbu, Chief Medical Officer of Aurora St. Luke’s Medical Center, who will present the most current information and answer your questions.
Thank you to Michele Richardson, chair-elect of the Advocate Aurora Health Board of Directors, who will facilitate the webinar. Click here to join.
Dr. Nkem Iroegbu
Dr. Robert Citronberg
Michele Richardson
How to Vote Safely in-Person
By: Dr. Nkem Iroegbu, Chief Medical Officer of Aurora St. Luke’s Medical Center

With Election Day just around the corner, many Americans are considering how they will cast their vote in the upcoming presidential election. But with COVID-19 cases on the rise nationally, you might be concerned about how to vote safely if you’re going in person, whether you’re voting early or on Nov. 3. Here are some things to think about.

Is it safe to vote in-person on election day if I’m no longer able to obtain a mail-in ballot?

No matter what your situation is, it is important to be mindful of the risks and to take steps to mitigate them. Each situation is going to be different and should be guided by the answers to questions such as how much COVID-19 activity is in your area, the practices at the polling places and your personal health risks.

6 Mask Myths Debunked
By: Dr. Robert Citronberg, Executive Medical Director of Infectious Disease for Advocate Aurora Health

Months into the pandemic, misinformation about masks continues to spread via social media and other means. It can be difficult to distinguish truth from fiction.

Here are some myths you may have heard and the truth as best we know it right now.

MYTH: You don’t need to wear a mask because you already had COVID-19 and recovered.

TRUTH: We do not yet know if people who have recovered from COVID-19 are immune to getting infected again and if so for how long. Therefore, even if you have had COVID-19 you should still continue to wear a mask. Also, remember that flu season is coming up and wearing a mask will help you from spreading the flu to others.

What to Look for in a Cloth Mask
Wearing a cloth mask over your nose and mouth can help people protect each other from the spread of COVID-19. And in some places, wearing a mask when you’re indoors or can’t keep distance from others is the law.

Watch this video to learn what to look for in a cloth mask.
Advocate Aurora COVID-19 Virtual Care Program
Advocate Aurora Health and the State of Illinois have partnered to help people recover from COVID 19 safely at home. The program is available to all residents over 12 months of age with known exposure to COVID 19 or experiencing COVID like symptoms. The program is free and there are no insurance requirements.

The program offers:
  • Daily virtual check ins via our LiveWell app or website for a period of 14 days
  • Educational information
  • Symptom self management and support
  • A home monitoring kit for those who qualify

If you’re an Illinois resident, call 866 443 2584 to enroll.

Download a flyer to share in English and Spanish.
COVID-19 Resources
The spread of COVID-19 is a rapidly evolving situation. Continue to check the CDC website for up-to-date information and guidance.

See a list of COVID-19 resources specifically for faith communities in Illinois and Wisconsin, including resiliency resources, mental health resources, religious and spiritual resources and more.

The Advocate Aurora Health COVID-19 hotline at 1-866-4-HEALTH is staffed by clinicians who can answer questions about symptoms and determine the next steps in care.

The Advocate Aurora Health LiveWell app offers virtual appointments and virtual visits with physicians 24-hours a day.

The Advocate Aurora Health COVID-19 Resource Center in English and Spanish provides the most up-to-date information, tools and resources, including the policies for visiting patients in our hospitals, a COVID-19 Symptom Checker, CDC resources, ways you can donate, volunteer and help—and more.

See additional COVID-19 resources in English and Spanish, including flyers, e-newsletters, videos and public service announcements.
Community Flu Shot Clinics
This year, getting a flu shot is more important than ever. Make sure you vaccinate yourself and your family by stopping by a community flu shot clinic near you. Our clinics are mobile, so you’ll find no-cost flu shots available at new locations every few days. 
There's no cost for a flu shot, and no appointment or insurance is needed. All clinics are open for walk-ins of all ages. 

November is National Gratitude Month
November is National Gratitude Month, a time to acknowledge our blessings and learn how to live a more grateful life.

Feel free to share the bulletin insert and worship slide with your faith community:

Gratitude Jar Project Makes an Impact One Blessing at a Time
Despite facing healthcare challenges and living through a pandemic, Floretta Strong-Pulley greets each day with gratitude.  “I’m so thankful to be alive,” she said. “Life is precious – I don’t want to waste a moment of it.”

To help her along her gratitude journey, Floretta, who has diabetes and undergoes maintenance chemotherapy, has joined dozens of others in participating in the Gratitude Jar Project.

The project began in January 2020 through the Partners of Faith Health Network (PFHN) at Advocate Trinity Hospital and Advocate South Suburban Hospital.

Floretta Strong-Pulley
Advocate Aurora Health-Sponsored Events
Oct. 28, 5:00 p.m.

Anxiety Disorders are the most common of mental disorders, affecting nearly 30 percent of adults at some point in their lives. Upon successful completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Differentiate between stress and anxiety.
  • Identify the signs and symptoms of the more common anxiety disorders
  • Understand risk factors for developing an anxiety disorder
  • Identify treatment options for anxiety
  • Learn strategies for supporting patients who are experiencing anxiety

  • Wednesdays, from Oct. 28 - Nov. 18
  • 3:00-4:00 p.m.

You can improve health, breathe easier and save money when you overcome nicotine dependence. Learn how by attending Freshstart, a free four-week virtual smoking cessation program. Please note: all participants are encouraged to attend all four sessions.

To register, contact Laurie Dlouhy, RN
Oct. 29, 9:00 a.m.-noon

According to the National Resource Center on Domestic Violence, communities of faith play a unique and vital role in the response to and elimination of domestic violence, as they carry the responsibility to protect and nurture the spiritual well-being of the community as a whole and its individual members.

The Chicagoland Trauma Informed Congregations Network Interfaith Advisory Council invites you to join faith leaders and communities in a virtual discussion about supporting survivors of domestic abuse and breaking the cycle of violence through our various faith traditions.

Nov. 5 & Nov. 12 at noon

Understanding Medicare and the Choices You Need to Make

Are you ready for Medicare?
As you approach 65 years of age and beyond, retiring or not, Medicare is something you should explore and understand. Learn more about Medicare basics, Medicare supplements, enrollment periods and more.

These free webinars are ideal for:
  • Individuals who will be turning 65 within six months
  • Individuals over 65, still working and considering retirement
  • Friends and family members who assist with Medicare decisions

These webinars are for educational purposes only. No specific plan information will be discussed.
Nov. 10 & Nov. 19 at noon

Learn more about your Medicare Advantage options & how to keep your doctors.

This webinar will focus on Medicare Part C also known as Medicare Advantage (MA).
We will discuss in deeper detail Medicare Advantage choices and how these plans bundle benefits, different types of MA plans, cost summaries of Medicare Advantage and the enrollment options available to you.

These free webinars are ideal for:
  • Individuals who will be turning 65 within six months
  • Individuals over 65, still working and considering retirement and transitioning to
  • Medicare
  • Friends and family members who assist with Medicare decisions

These webinars are for educational purposes only. No specific plan information will be discussed.
Nov. 13, noon-1:30 p.m.

Think Teens Don't Gamble? Think Again! Email for more details, or to ask about the sessions we will hold in Spanish.
  • Tuesdays from 8:30-9:00 a.m.
  • Thursdays from 6:00-6:30 p.m.

The Prayer Support Line allows us to come together in unity to release our burdens, receive comfort and express our gratitude to God for holding us close during this pandemic.

The Prayer Support Line is a place where we can join with others in prayer for health, healing and spiritual care with the expectation that God will meet us and provide us with encouragement.
  • Wednesdays, through Dec. 30
  • 6:00-7:00 p.m.

“What’s Next?” is a weekly resilience program that combines evidence-based scientific studies with encouragement from faith-based resources. Participants will gain tools to:

  • build resilience amid the difficulties of life
  • learn from their experiences
  • use the knowledge they gain to nourish themselves and the world around them

Attend any or all sessions. LaShondria Purnell, RN, a faith community nurse with Advocate Aurora Health, facilitates "What's Next?" and looks forward to learning alongside you.
Events From Our Partners
Exploring Grief Groups
Lake Forest
7:00-8:30 p.m. on Mondays through Nov. 30

North Shore
7:00-8:30 p.m. on Thursdays through Dec. 10

Are you or someone you know grieving the loss of a family member, partner, or friend? If so, find comfort and support in free virtual Exploring Grief Groups. The groups provide a confidential, educational and nonjudgmental environment. They encourage attendees to cope with their loss and continue to find meaning in their lives. These groups are facilitated by professional counselors.

To register for Lake Forest group, contact Denise Kitanovski at 847-446-6955, ext. 22 or 

To register for North Shore group, contact Joellen at 847-446-6955, ext. 19 or

  • Tuesdays through Jan. 12, 2021
  • 7:00-9:00 p.m.

Sponsored by Grace Lutheran Church, River Forest

GriefShare is a special weekly seminar and support group designed to help you rebuild your life after losing a loved one. Our group is led by caring people who have experienced grief and want to help you through the difficult days ahead.

To register, call 708-366-6900 or email
Mental Health Resources

Mental Health e-newsletter available

Advocate Aurora Health Faith and Mental Health Quarterly provides updates on mental health resources, events and news to support the well-being of people in your congregation and community.

If you would like to be added to the mailing list, please contact Cindy Novak.
Health and Wellness Resources

Up to 80 percent of strokes are preventable, and many of the risk factors are controllable. Take Advocate Aurora Health’s online Stroke Risk Assessment to estimate your chance of experiencing one and learn about the ways you could minimize it.

Learn more about CHAMP (Congregational Health Asset Mapping Partnership), which brings people in a community together to identify how faith communities are supporting the health and well-being of the community.
November Observances
1: All Saints Day - Christian
1: Samhain - Beltane - Wicca/Pagan
2: All Souls Day - Catholic Christian
3: Milad un Nabi (Shia) – Islam
4: Karwa Chauth - Hinduism
12: Birth of Baha'u'llah - Baha'i
14: Diwali - Hindu-Jain-Sikh
15: Nativity Fast begins - ends Dec. 24 - Orthodox Christian
15: Vikram New Year - Hindu
15: Jain New Year - Jain
22: Christ the King - Christian
24: Martyrdom of Guru Tegh Bahdur - Sikh
26: Thanksgiving - Interfaith USA
26: Day of the Covenant - Baha'i
28: Ascension of 'Abdu'l-Baha - Baha'i
29: December 24 Advent begins- Christian
30: St. Andrew's Day - Christian
30: Birthday of Guru Nanak Dev Sahib - Sikh
Wishing you and your loved ones a blessed Thanksgiving!
Want to Hear From You!

We hope you find this update helpful as you promote the health of your members and community. Please contact Cindy Novak if you have topics you'd like us to address or if you have questions or concerns.
Click here to subscribe to health enews, a news service of Advocate Aurora Health, which offers breaking health stories, weight loss tips, exercise advice, the latest treatment options and much more.